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Boat Batteries

I have been reading about Elecol 115 Ah AGM Solar batteries which are quite expensiveat £179 and they have a 7 year warranty. I presently have 4 wet cell batteries going into my third year with and they seem ok.However I do look after them but still have to top them up quite regularly and as I am getting older I have to be a bit of a contortionist to do them.
I hope to get at least five years from them so two lots of wet batteries would last me for 10 years at a cost of approx £700. However if I could get 10 years out of say the Elecol Batteries cost would be approx. £720 and I would have no maintenance. My boat is kept in a marina and I have shore power and a good quality battery charger. Are these Elecol batteries up to the job or can you recomend others just as good.

Asked by: boatfitout  | 10.51pm, Tuesday 6 March

WW says:

Many boat builders give insufficient consideration to the positioning of batteries, and they often end up tucked away under fixed decks, with no thought to access for maintenance. Owners often have to crouch over the engine and use a mirror to peer into the cells to check levels and top up the acid. This is the reason that so many batteries do not get any attention, be they 'maintenance free' or not, until there are problems.
The life of a battery obviously depends on the use it has:
' All batteries have a limited number of charge/discharge cycles.
' They should not be left discharged.
' A good charger will keep a battery in good condition and ready for use.
The physical conditions of battery storage will also affect their life. Those stored in battery boxes within the insulated cabin space are not subjected to the temperature extremes of those stuck under a cruiser stern deck, and with care are likely to last longer.
I think it is Elecsol Batteries that you have in mind. These have special lead plates reinforced with carbon fibre and do seem to last longer than conventional lead acid. They are however not maintenance free and you will still need to check the electrolyte levels. If you want a truly 'maintenance free' battery, gel batteries do not need topping up. They do however need to be charged at a lower voltage to prevent gassing.

Rupert Smedley  | 6.16PM, Wednesday 7 March

Readers say:

This may save you being a contortionist , I purchased a battery top up bottle from stones chandlers ideal for limited head room and for me it works well .

mick turner  | 5.01PM, Thursday 8 March

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